T.I.’s son, Domani Harris, has always been vocal about respecting and admiring J. Cole‘s approach to the rap game. Now, he can officially add opening up his 2024 Dreamville festival to his ever-growing list of accomplishments.

During the fourth annual installment of the festival that J. Cole has brought to the city just outside of his hometown of Fayetteville, North Carolina, Domani was the first artist to grace the stage, a moment he will cherish forever.

“All of the artists, just the whole line up… I respect so much,” Domani told Blavity backstage moments after his performance. “I admire their creativity, their consistency… I’m on the same stage that SZA is about to be on. That’s crazy. It’s a big deal.”

Throughout his budding music career, Domani hasn’t shied away from his desire to soak up knowledge from those who come before him, including the 2014 Forest Hills Drive MC, who he previously mentioned turned him down on several occasions when he reached out to collaborate on a track.

After attending a writing camp hosted by Cole in Domani’s hometown of Atlanta, it wasn’t long before he released his latest EP, Dear Jane, and received a phone call that inspired him to keep going.

“It was confirmation,” he said of the phone call from J. Cole, who called Domani’s latest body of work “a classic.”

He added, “We met because he had a writer’s camp in Atlanta, and I just pulled up, and he gave me his number. He didn’t know if I was gonna be bugging him or anything like that, but he gave me his number, and we kind of built a relationship like that.”

Fast-forward to now, Domani’s set during the 2024 Dreamville weekend kicked off the entire festival, and it is only the beginning for the young star who isn’t a stranger to the music business, coming from a very musical family. However, he is committed more than ever to continue carving his lane.

“Everyone has their own identity, but really stamping it and standing on it? It’s not too much to think about,” he said. “I’m just doing music, and it’s being received well. I’m hearing feedback from people, and they’re telling me what I’m doing, but I don’t even know what I’m doing; I’m just making music.”

Drawing inspiration from some of life’s most simple intricacies, whether a film or a movie or self-reflection, Domani hopes that his music encourages and uplifts anyone who listens.

“I hope it inspires people just to be greater,” Domani said. “Just to be creative and to understand that you don’t have to be in a box that people put you in. That’s the biggest inspiration or motivation.”

It would be remiss that the “Forever Lasting” rapper would play at the Dreamville festival without his dreams being a testament to where he is in life today.

“Dreaming big means looking crazy,” Domani concluded. “It means sometimes being OK with looking delusional and being OK with that. It means sometimes being scared because the dream is so big.”